News from the Levine-Riggs Diabetes Research Symposium

  • The 2019 Rachmiel Levine-Arthur Riggs Diabetes Research Symposium just concluded in Pasadena, CA! This report includes all of our daily highlights from this fascinating meeting, which has become increasingly focused on type 1 diabetes basic science. It was truly inspiring to hear from a range of legendary scientists committed to pushing forward this field.
  • In novel diabetes therapies and technologies, we saw promising two-year TrialNet results on preserving beta cell function with low-dose antithymocyte globulin (ATG). The positive one-year results first shared at ADA 2018 continued into year two, with significantly higher C-peptide levels in subjects treated with ATG vs. placebo. We were equally encouraged by Dr. Michael Weiss’s (IU) presentation on novel single-chain insulins (SCI) that remains stable at extreme temperatures and agitation. Notably, Dr. Weiss’ group found that SCIs could remain effective after exposure to elevated temperatures for at least 57 days, while existing analogs had lost function at a maximum of 45 days.
  • In beta cell function and diabetes pathophysiology, we were especially excited to hear Icahn School of Medicine’s Dr. Andrew Stewart present data showing that the combined inhibition of DYRK1A and TFGß leads to robust beta cell proliferation. In fact, Dr. Stewart estimated that the resulting replication rates are sufficient to restore beta cell mass in patients with type 2 diabetes in ~six months. Additionally, we saw granular data from the sobering RISE pediatric study, reflecting differing pathophysiology of type 2 diabetes in children vs. adults. We hope to see increased commitment to addressing this group from a broader group of stakeholders.
  • In diabetes complications and cancer, we learned how the body has innate inflammatory resolution activity that has the potential to be harnessed for the prevention of diabetes complications such as renal dysfunction and atherosclerosis. We also heard from Dr. Gregory Steinberg (McMaster University, Ontario, Canada) on the mechanism through which AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) protects against liver cancer.

From Close Concern report

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